Tuesday, November 14, 2017

The Colony - Turn 54/55 - Fighting Retreat/Corpse Patrol

These turns are fairly short (again), so I'm going to do another double-header. We're also experiencing some scheduling turbulence in the group, which is why reports have been so sporadic lately. These two turns bring us almost up to date.

Start Date: August 21, mid-morning
Start Status: Pretty sure it's...
Start Location: Silverstream Mine

Adventuring: Rennard, Jinx, Mendel, Smoke, Zenobe
At the Tulip: Adrienne, Brigg, Hagan, Xon, Aaron

The Turn

Now that they have a small group of enemies engaged, the party executes their pre-arranged plan, a fighting retreat toward the entrance to avoid getting cut off or surrounded. The only potential hitch, the approaching kla-krunch, kla-krunch, kla-krunch sounds from the west.

[Round Four - Party First]

Zenobe leads the reverse advance, encouraging the others to follow and keeping an eye out for ambushes and lurking enemies. Brigg takes a bow shot as he retreats and misses. Rennard connects with his sword [5 damage] and his foe drops in the group's wake. Jinx slashes his foe with his bayonet-equipped blunderbuss, scoring a solid hit as well [7 damage].

The trailing miner-thing steps into the gap and the two remaining foes attack Jinx and Rennard, but one blow goes wide and the other bounces off Jinx's breastplate.

Meanwhile, at the back of the group, Smoke continues to listen to the kla-krunch noises with growing apprehension. They seem to come from one of the northwest passages leading off the main chamber.

[Round Five - Enemy First]

The creatures continue to press as the party gets close to Smoke, who shouts "Be ready to run, the noises are close!" Both miners miss again. Brigg misses again with his bow shot, as does Rennard with his sword. Jinx rams his bayonet into his opponent's guts, and they spill onto the floor, along with the dead creature [7 damage].

[Round Six - Enemy First]

Despite the loss of all its allies, the remaining creature presses the attack, pummeling Rennard in a futile attempt to inflict damage. Jinx and Rennard flank the miner and after Brigg's arrow thunks into the thing's body, they both slice the creature to pieces. [three hits, lots of damage].

Smoke and Zenobe keep watch on the tunnels to the west and catch a glimpse of reflected blue light down the second tunnel. The kla-krunch sounds slowly fade away.

The fading kla-krunch sounds spur the party to action. Rennard and Zenobe sling their weapons and pick up the nearest dead miner. The group heads to the entrance, their path illuminated solely by the dim glow of Zenobe's holy symbol.

Once outside, Zenobe and Rennard examine the corpse in daylight. It's not a pretty sight. It still wears ragged work clothes, but discolored grayish flesh shows through the torn cloth. Greenish crystals grow out of the body at various locations, spine, shoulder, right hip and left shin, and when Zenobe tries to dig one out, he finds they are firmly attached to the body, perhaps growing straight out of the thing's skeleton. The crystalline growths don't look like any familiar stone or natural material. Neither the corpse nor the crystals react to the sunlight.

Examination over, Zenobe and Rennard set the body aside, and the group forms up to continue their exploration. This time they head left with Brigg scouting and using his dark vision amulet. As they re-enter the mine, they hear the faint digging noises again, this time coming from somewhere ahead and to the right.

The left passage leads to several dead-end corridors and chambers, including one with signs of recent activity, broken rock and fresh prints, both large and small. Eventually, it turns north and goes up a short slope before splitting once again. This time, Brigg falls back before the miner-things attack from their positions behind support pillars and piled boulders. "They were definitely waiting for us! They're not stupid," he calls as he retreats to a position behind the others.

The battle is brief and decisive. With Rennard and Jinx holding the front line, and Smoke and Brigg using their ranged attacks from the second rank, the creatures fall quickly. During the fight, you notice they use the same sort of pummeling attacks as before. You're left with five more bodies and a few minor wounds. Brigg notes that one of the corpses is wearing a Vinehold mercenary cloak and garb more suited to fighting than mining.

The party is still in good shape, so they press on. They pass another split and then turn left at a fork and find themselves in a fairly large room. There are more footprints here, all human-sized, and they lead to a 5-foot wide shaft that goes straight down. A rough wooden ladder is nailed to one wall of this vertical passage. The room itself is unremarkable. The floor is strewn with rubble and large boulders and scattered support beams hold up the low ceiling. There are a few hand tools piled against the west wall, but they are rusty and covered in cobwebs and dust.


Most of the damage the party took during these two fights was subdual damage and lost hit points were quickly recovered after a brief rest.

End Date: August 21,
End Status: Going down?
End Location: Silverstream Mine

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